Colonic enteroendocrine cells (EECs) store and release potent anorectic hormones that are key regulators of satiety. EECs express multiple nutrient sensing receptors, particularly for medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs): GPR84 and FFAR4. Here we show a non-surgical approach with targeted colonic delivery of MCFA, which induces EEC and neuronal activation leading to anorectic effects.A randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over study was performed in obese adults given combined GPR84 and FFAR4 agonists in colonic release capsules before meals. We measured serum hormones, energy intake and appetite perception. Cell type, activation by agonists and hormone/serotonin release were determined in human colonic explants. Mouse colonic afferent nerve responses to nutrients/mediators were recorded electrophysiologically.Subjects receiving GPR84 and FFAR4 agonists had reduced overall calorific intake and increased postprandial levels of PYY versus placebo. Receptors including GPR84 and FFAR4 were coexpressed on human colonic EEC. Activation of GPR84 exclusively induced intracellular pERK, whereas FFAR4 selectively activated pCaMKII. Coactivation of GPR84 and FFAR4 induced both phosphoproteins, and superadditive release of GLP-1 and PYY. Nutrients and hormones convergently activated murine colonic afterent nerves via GLP-1, Y2 and 5-HT3 receptors.Colonic GPR84 and FFAR4 agonists reduce energy intake and increase postprandial PYY in obese adults. Human colonic EECs coexpress these receptors, which activate cells via parallel intracellular pathways and synergistically evoke hormone release. Further synergism occurs in sensory nerve responses to MCFA and EEC mediators. Thus, synergistic activation of colonic endocrine cells via nutrient receptors is an important target for metabolic regulation.NCT04292236.
Madusha Peiris, Rubina Aktar, David Reed, Vincent Cibert-Goton, Ausra Zdanaviciene, Writaja Halder, Adam Robinow, Simon Corke, Harween Dogra, Charles H Knowles, Ashley Blackshaw